Plus, Standsted expansion plans 'in tatters' and predictions that housing market will avoid a crash

Leading McAlpine investors support Carillion

Pressure on the Alfred McAlpine board was ramped up after two of the group’s three largest shareholders offered their support for Carillion’s indicative offer of 570p a share, the Financial Times reports.

Stansted campaign group says BAA expansion plan ‘in tatters’

Chairman of the Stop Stansted Expansion campaign group said BAA’s case for growth was “in tatters” after the four month inquiry into the application to expand closed yesterday, the Financial Times reports. Peter Sanders said BAA had failed to provide “ a shred of evidence” that expanding the airport would bring any net economic benefits.

Caterpillar grim on US outlook

US-based maker of construction equipment Caterpillar issued a bleak prognosis for the US economy on Friday, saying it was “near to, or even in, recession.” says the Financial Times.

Lenders sell out of two-year mortgages in days

Lenders are selling out of short-term mortgages within days as homeowners rush to remortgage properties on reduced rates according to the Financial Times. Dunfermline Building Society sold out of its 5.29 % two-year fixed rate deal after four days.

Bidders down to final pair for nuclear sell-off

Italy’s Finmeccanica and Britain’s VT Group are the last two in the running to buy Project Services, BNFL’s specialist nuclear-decommisioning division, The Sunday Times reports. The companies will submit their final bids this week.

Housing ‘will avoid crash’

Britain’s housing market will not crash despite the prospect of a slowdown in the economy next year, according to the Ernst & Young Item Club’s new forecast, the Sunday Times reports.

Social spirit is burning bright

Steve Wyler, director of the Development Trusts Association, uses an interview in the Observer to talk about government agencies’ attempts to drive urban regeneration. “Many of these efforts, though well meaning, haven't achieved results,” he says. “We think some of the huge amounts the government has spent on more traditional regeneration programmes would be better employed in development trusts.”

Dilemma: Should I buy a rooftop turbine for my house? The answer is blowing in the wind

Wind turbines can be a costly “green white elephant” according to the Observer. Small turbines give minuscule energy returns and can cause structural damage to property. The newspaper advises carrying out a feasibility study with an anemometer rather than relying on manufacturers claims – or the “one type of spin you can do without”.

What a perfect place to get divorced

The Observer’s architectural critic Stephen Bayley praises Denton Corker Marshall’s Civil Justice Centre in Manchester. The building is “dramatic, lucid and subtle,” he says. “It is remarkable that the conservative legal profession and a high government official should have acquired a building so radical. It is certainly Manchester's best.”

Balfour in talks to seal water deal

Balfour Beatty is in talks to buy South Staffordshire Water for around £400m, according to the Mail on Sunday. The Midlands utility was earmarked for auction by owner Arcapita, but Balfour Beatty has reportedly entered a “knockout bid”.

Market Report: Investors seek sanctuary in housebuilders

Investors found comfort in housebuilders last week, boosted by talk of a prospective bid for Redrow, The Independent reports. There was talk of a 500p-per share offer linked to Persimmon.

Anniversary of Black Monday a greyish day

Speculation on a 500p-per-share bid for housebuilder Redrow helped the recovery of builders and property developers on Friday on an otherwise bad day for the FTSE 100, The Times reports.

Mortgage firm fined over equity-release loans

Buy-to-let mortgage provider Minel Group has been fined £10,500 by the Financial Services Authority (FSA) for exposing consumers to the risk of being sold an unsuitable equity-release loan, according to the Independent on Sunday.

Yet another Tesco boss checks out

Tesco has been hit by the fifth defection of a senior manager in as many months as fears escalate over a brain drain at the UK retailer, said The Daily Telegraph on Saturday. Keith Down, Tesco commercial finance director, has left to join pub company JD Wetherspoon as finance director.

Kier Group looks at selling pension fund to specialist buyer

Kier Group is understood to be looking at options for its pensions scheme, which could include passing it on to a third party, reported The Sunday Telegraph. It is understood at least one pension buyout specialist has provided a quote for part of the scheme, which has liabilities of around £540m.

Colony of bats handicaps golf course’s £100m restoration

A £100m development at the St Mellion Golf and Country Club, Cornwall, has been delayed for months to protect a colony of rare bats, The Times reports.